Feb 25, 2010


Sorry this post is so late. Just another case of my poor organizational skills coming into play. :-)

Here’s a form that’s perfect for all you non-rhymers out there.

Retournes can, but do not have to rhyme.

Like so many other French forms, the Retourne is all about repetition. It contains four quatrains (four-line stanzas), and each line has eight syllables.

Now for the fun part. The second line of the first stanza becomes the first line of the second stanza. The third line of the first stanza becomes the first line of the fourth stanza. The fourth line of the first stanza becomes the first line of the fourth stanza. And remember, it does not have to rhyme, but each line should be eight syllables.

I’m actually surprised this form isn’t more popular, it’s pretty easy to do. I tried doing some research into its history, but I came up empty. Pretty much all I could find was what I told you above.

So, let’s get to my example:

The Westerly Wind

A westerly wind calls to me,
Bringing me tales from distant shores
Winding its way along the path
Tempting me to follow along.

Bringing me tales from distant shores
The westerly wind speaks to me,
Filling me with a restlessness;
Desires and longings without name

Winding its way along the path,
The westerly wind skims the trees,
Showing me which way to follow
Then racing away on other quests.

Tempting me to follow along,
The westerly wind challenges me
To take a step into the unknown.
One day soon I might just follow.

Feb 24, 2010

Whimsical Wednesday

Tough Love vs. Spanking - A Good Argument

Most people think it improper to spank children, so I have tried other methods to control my kids when they have one of 'those moments.'

One that I found effective is for me to just take the child for a car ride and talk.

Some say it's the vibration from the car, others say it's the time away from any distractions such as TV, Video Games, Computer, IPod, etc.

Either way, my kids usually calm down and stop misbehaving after our car ride together. Eye to eye contact helps a lot too.

I've included a photo below of one of my sessions with my son, in case you would like to use the technique.

Your Friend

This works with grandchildren, nieces, and nephews as well.

* * * * * * * * * *

And in honour of my new job, I have a couple of work related funnies for you.

Feb 23, 2010

Tell Me Your Fortune - Part IV

Fortune telling doesn't always have to be so serious. Think back to your school days and I'm sure you might remember someone (maybe even you) taking a piece of paper and folding it just so in order to tell your fortune.

The earliest mention of a game like this was in the early 1600s in Japan. This would seem to make sense, since the first origami (Asian folded paper art) is said to have originated in 1680. But the exact origin of paper fortune teller is not known.

The first mention of the fortune telling game in Europe is in the early 17th century. It is not known if a European learned the game in Asia first, or if the game developed on it's own in Europe. By the early 20th century, the game was firmly established and well known among children throughout Asia, Europe, and North America.

If a picture's worth a thousand words, then a video must be worth at least a couple of thousand. Below is a video that shows you step by step how to create your very own origami fortune teller. Amaze your friends, or at the very least, have some fun!

Feb 22, 2010

Money-Making Monday

“I owe, I owe, it’s off to work I go . . .”

Yes folks, it’s my first day at my brand new job. Did I spend my weekend brushing up on Word and Excel which I will be using in my new job? Nope. Did I do any of the vast amount of writing I have waiting for me - a flash piece for my scribes meeting tonight, the business plan I still have to present at school for my diploma, the poem I’m supposed to have ready for my poetry group tomorrow night, my piece for today’s blogfest, not to mention editing and new words on my current projects. Of course not.

Instead I gorged myself on mindless games as a coping mechanism to deal with the anxiety I’m feeling about my new job. Yes, I know I’m being unreasonably paranoid, but I can’t help it. That’s just the way I’m wired. I can shrug off bad stuff happening, but I always view the good stuff with suspicion.


It was another blur-filled week last week. First of all, it was a short week ‘cause of the holiday Monday, and then I had to cram my last two weeks of school into the remaining four days. I took my last exam on Friday afternoon.

The good news is, I reached all my goals last week. Got all my posts done and up in time and I even managed to write my own poem to illustrate my poetry post.

I also start knitting a pair of leg-warmers for the daughter, which strikes me as a little silly considering what a mild winter we’ve had. I’m using four double pointed needles, and at the rate I’m making progress they might be done in time for next winter.

Goals for This Week:

Random Tuesday: Fortune Telling, Part Four. This week I’m trying something a little different. I’ve got a video to show a fortune telling method you’ve probably all tried at one time or another.

Whimsical Wednesday: I haven’t thought this far ahead. Will it be a cartoon? A video? A story? Guess we’ll have to wait until Wednesday and we’ll both be surprised. :-)

Thursday: This week on Passion for Poetry, is the French form of the Retourne.

Friday: Chapter 28 of the Space Opera.

This week I also have a bunch of meetings: Northumberland Scribes tonight, the meeting of my poetry group tomorrow night (I blew off the poetry reading last week to study for my exam), an administration meeting of my poetry group on Thursday, and Thursday morning I have to present my business plan to my former class. School starts at 8:30 a.m. and work doesn’t start until 9:30, which gives me just enough time, even with the commute.

Random Writing

I still don’t have my progress bars up. Will I get them up this week? No promises, but I’ll try.


I’ve picked out my picture, I just have to finish my story. Hopefully I’ll have my offering up later today/tonight. It’s not too late to join the fun, go HERE

Okay, enough about me, what about you? What are you up to this week?

Feb 18, 2010

Ae Freislighe

Until the 5th Century the only written form of Irish was Ogham which was used solely for carving into trees and gravestones. As a result Gaelic Poetry was based on sound structures to make them easy to remember, with rhyme not as important as repetition, alliteration and rhythm.

The Ae Freislighe (ay fresh-lee) is an Irish syllabic stanza form. Almost all the Irish and Welsh forms are complex systems of rhyme, alliteration, and consonance. It is often difficult to reproduce such forms in English, so particular attention should be paid to the rhyme scheme and syllabification.

Simplified, the Ae Freislighe is a quatrain stanza of seven syllable lines. Lines one and three rhyme in triple rhymes; lines two and four rhyme in double rhymes. The poem (not the stanza) should end with the same first syllable, word, or line with which it begins. The technical term for this ending is dunadh, and it occurs in all the Gaelic forms. The diagram looks like this:


Your poem can contain as many stanzas as you are prepared to take to tell your story, however the last line of the poem, as stated previously, should end with the same syllable or word or line that it began with.

For example, if your poem started with the line “Blowing winds change direction” then the final line of your poem should end with the syllable “blow”, the word “blowing” or the entire line.

My example was a little harder to write than I expected, for the simple fact that I found it hard to write in seven syllable lines. I kept wanting to use eight.

Gazing Into Yesterday

Gazing into yesterday
All my thoughts have gone askew
Leaving me in disarray
With new pathways to pursue.

Changing thought with direction,
The path ahead is unclear;
Hopes and dreams of perfection
Suddenly become austere.

In my path is temptation
Of all my heart could desire
Forge ahead to salvation
Spirit flying e’er higher.

Needed here, a new perspective
Maybe one that’s more mundane.
Isn’t that our first objective?
Maybe then we start again.

I have come to realize
With chosen words for phrasing,
The poet will idealize
Yesterday into gazing.

Feb 17, 2010

Whimsical Wednesday

Two pieces for you today. One cute story, and one equally cute video. Hope you enjoy!

Bottle of Wine

A woman and a man are involved in a car accident on a snowy, cold Monday morning; it's a bad one. Both of their cars are totally demolished, but amazingly neither of them is hurt. God works in mysterious ways. After they crawl out of their cars, the man is yelling about women drivers.

The woman says, 'So, you're a man. That's interesting. I'm a woman. Wow, just look at our cars! There's nothing left, but we're unhurt. This must be a sign from God that we should be friends and live in peace for the rest of our days.'

Flattered, the man replies, 'Oh yes, I agree completely, this must be a sign from God! But you're still at fault...women shouldn't be allowed to drive.'

The woman continues, 'And look at this, here's another miracle. My car is completely demolished but this bottle of wine didn't break. Surely God wants us to drink this wine and celebrate our good fortune.'

She hands the bottle to the man. The man nods his head in agreement, opens it and drinks half the bottle and then hands it back to the woman.

The woman takes the bottle, puts the cap back on and hands it back to the man. The man asks, 'Aren't you having any?'

The woman replies, 'No. I think I'll just wait for the police...'


Women are clever, evil bitches.
Don't mess with them.

Feb 16, 2010

Tell Me Your Fortune - Part III


Pythagoras and other philosophers of his time believed that because mathematical concepts were more "practical" (easier to regulate and classify) than physical ones, they had greater actuality.

St. Augustine of Hippo (A.D. 354–430) wrote "Numbers are the Universal language offered by the deity to humans as confirmation of the truth." Similar to Pythagoras, he too believed that everything had numerical relationships and it was up to the mind to seek and investigate the secrets of these relationships or have them revealed by divine grace.

In 325 A.D Numerology had not found favor with the Christian authority of the day and was assigned to the field of unapproved beliefs along with astrology and other forms of divination and "magic". Despite this religious purging, the spiritual significance assigned to the "sacred" numbers had not disappeared.

Today, numerology is often associated with the occult, alongside astrology and similar divinatory arts.

To discover your personality traits through the power of numbers, write out your name in full and below each letter write the corresponding number from the chart below. Add all the numbers. If you get a two digit number, add the two numbers together and again if necessary to get a single digit.

1. Signifies drive and action. It stands for creative activity, boldness, vigour and courage. Persons with this number are likely to plunge ahead in response to a challenge, ignoring possible difficulties. They must be on guard against over-confidence and pride, but they can succeed in positions of leadership.

2. Number of balance, good judgment and quiet contemplation. Persons with this number tend to be warm, but take an intellectual approach to life. They are able to see both sides of an issue, tactful, good judges or peacemakers. Weaknesses include a reluctance to ge involved, and timidity.

3. This is the number of self-expression and the artistic temperament, of intuition and refinement. Persons with this name number should do well as singers, artists, poets, or actors, or in other fields where the ability to empathize is important. These people excel in the limelight and centre stage, but tend to be impatient of details, unwilling to take advice or make long term plans.

4. Persons with this number can persevere at a hard job through all difficulties until they're successful. They have strong scientific and mechanical ability, skilled in organization. However, they lack flash and may be hurt by this. They can be penalized by their willingness to take the hard work others shun.

5. People with this number are quite versatile, playing a number of roles or holding a variety of positions. Independent of thought, willing to try new things. Charming and changeable. May end as jacks-of-all-trades and masters of none.

6. Persons with this number are thoughtful, warm and popular. They have happy marriages, and long-lasting friendships. They must live up to their impression of trustworthiness to be successful in their careers. They must guard against making radical departures in business.

7. A number associated with greatness, renowned mystics, philosophers, composers and authors. These people tend to make few friends but to keep those friends for a lifetime. They tend to be gloomy and idealistic which often leads to impractical actions.

8. The number of power and determination, a drive to achieve success in spite of all odds. Tend to have great executive ability, set high goals for themselves and fight to achieve them. Hazards to watch out for include restlessness, lack of tact and an inability to be happy no matter what success is achieved.

9. A number for large-minded people. Persons with this number tend to seek out careers that combine busy activity with idealism. They have a humanitarian approach that gives them influence with others. Often help solve problems. They must avoid the temptation to domineer weaker personalities.

Name numbers can be changed by changing your name or the way it is spelled.

A long time ago I worked with a woman who had the spelling of her name legally changed because it gave her a better number, numerologically speaking. This may seem a little extreme, but a surprising number of people believe in the power of numbers.

Birth Numbers

Using a numerical birth date, add the numbers as for your name (ie. September 12, 1960 = 9+1+2+1+9+6+0 =2 +8 = 1+0 =1)

1. A born leader. Has strong drive and maintains independence of thought and action. Can achieve great things through originality and creative thought. A strong tendency to go it alone. Must guard against egotism and bullheadedness.

2. Naturally helpful and cooperative, willing to get along with others and ready to compromise. Natural arbitrator. Has a tendency to weakness.

3. A mercurial temperament. Reacts quickly, quick to anger but quick to forget. Relies strongly on intuition, sometimes letting it overrule common sense. Quite popular socially, but negligent of success.

4. Honesty and integrity to the point of stuffiness. Does honest work and expects justice in return. Highly organized, centering on responsibility and discipline, willing to do necessary but unglamorous work. Often easy marks for the unscrupulous.

5. Enthusiastic and curious. Ready to accept new ideas and explore the potentials. Can be great travellers. Somewhat unreliable.

6. Stable and trustworthy. Guided by deep inner convictions. Rarely led into questionable activities. Tend to lose opportunities because of doubts about unconventional propositions. Broad-minded, understanding and sympathetic.

7. An understanding nature. Tend to have great periods of thoughtfulness. A tendency to over-analysis, thought instead of action. Conservative. The intellectual approach to human problems often cause difficulties.

8. Highly developed sense of organization, a great degree of steadiness, strong feeling of discipline. Tend to make big plans. Has a great regard for worldly success, and a drive to achieve wealth and power.

9. A magnetic, warm personality. Usually surrounded by friends. Enormously popular, providing an opportunity for great humanitarian achievement. Tendency toward overindulgence.

Feb 15, 2010

This Is Monday

After posting yesterday, I didn’t want you to start getting your days of the week mixed up, hence the short, yet accurate, post heading. :-)

Yes, it’s Monday again. And I’m late getting this post up. There’s a very good reason for that. Today is Family Day (at least in Canada it is) and I had the day off, so I slept in, just because I could. ;-)

In case you missed yesterday’s post where I mentioned the 1K Words Blogfest, then go HERE to find out all about it. As a bonus, there’s a really cute picture of a dog there as well.

Last week passed in a blur. I felt crappy off and on and spent a lot of time napping. You know the old saying, “No rest for the wicked”? Well, I must have been extra good last week ‘cause I feel like all I did was rest, or nap, to be precise. I think it’s time to start taking the B12 again.


Last week’s goals were part two of my fortune telling series; humorous story or video; poetry form of Luc Bat; Chapter 26 of the Space Opera.

Last week I scheduled my goals post to appear on the wrong blog so it was late getting up here. I did get part two of my fortune telling series up and I didn’t have to resort to a video for my Whimsical Wednesday. Although I did explore the poetry form of Luc Bat, I was not able to come up with an original one to go with the post. I did make a couple of attempts, but they just didn’t flow properly. Friday I got the next serial chapter done in time, but unfortunately I scheduled it to appear in the PM instead of AM.

So, all in all, it was a pretty mediocre week. Except in one respect. *drum roll please* I had a job interview on Monday and Tuesday I was offered a job in an Editorial Development House that works with authors writing textbooks. Squee! I will be gainfully employed once more, starting Monday, February 22!

Goals for This Week:

Random Tuesday: Fortune Telling, Part Three. The third part of my series about fortune telling will explore Numerology.

Whimsical Wednesday: I said last week that I was starting to run out of humorous stories, yet I still managed to find a couple. But don’t be surprised to find a humorous video instead of a story this week.

Thursday: This week on Passion for Poetry, I will attempt the Irish form of the Ae Freslighe.

Friday: Chapter 27 of the Space Opera. This time I’m aiming for not only getting my post done before 2 a.m., but scheduling it for 8 AM instead of PM. :-)

This week I also need to brush up on my Excel for my new job since I’ll be working mostly in Excel and Word.

Random Writing

This didn’t go the way I’d planned either. I did not get my flash piece done for the Northumberland Scribes, so I ended up posting the prompt late.

I forgot all about the progress bars so I’ll add them to the list for this week.

I’m finding the problem with lists is, you have to look at them once in awhile to be able to follow them. :-)

I did do a post about the Chinese New Year yesterday – this is the Year of the Tiger now. There’s even a link for you to find out what animal of the Chinese Zodiac you were born under. If your birth month is January or February, you might not be the animal you think you are. For years I followed the western interpretation and believed I was born in the year of the Boar. But according to the true Chinese calendar, I was born in the year of the Dog.

So that’s what I have/will be up to this week, how about you? What’s going on with your life these days?

Feb 14, 2010

Not Monday

I know I don't usually post on the weekend, so I thought I'd just make sure you all realized it was not in fact Monday yet. :-)

First off, I would like to make sure everyone knows about the 1K Words Blogfest being hosted by Ralfast. You can sign up for it HERE .

Yes, one thousand words, as in a picture is worth a thousand words.

Or is it?

That’s is the question and it is up you to answer it as part of the 1K Words BlogFest. Take a picture, any picture (preferably one you own or is in the public domain) and post it to your blog. Then write a short story/account based on the picture you posted. The story must be a thousand words or less (hence the name). Once posted, link back to this post.

Please enter the name of your blog in the Mister Linky widget or post it on the reply section. I will update this post daily with new links as they appear (if they are not in the Mr. Linky).

The BlogFest kicks off on February 22nd

I've already signed up and I think you should too. Why? Because it's going to be lots of fun, that's why!

* * * * * * * * * *

I've received a couple of blog awards recently and felt it was high time I did something about them.

The first is from the lovely Simone, over at The Romantic Query Letter and the Happily Ever After . If you haven't been to her site before, go there now. Her writing is elegant and lyrical, and I cannot wait for the day when I can pick up one of her novels in the bookstore.

Please accept the 'Creative Writer Award' with no strings attached. You can post it within an awards page, sidebar, or new post; you can link it to me and pass it on to writers you know who host writing blogs, or you can simply read this note with my thanks attached and do nothing further. This is just intended as a gesture to further the premise 'writer' within 'blogger.' I'd love to see more writers acknowledged for the craft! Because we all are writers

I, in turn, would like to pass this award on to:


There's a couple of more I'd like to add, but they've already received this award. :-)

Next, from the equally lovely Jamie, over on the The Variety Pages I have received the Silver Lining Award.

This award comes with no conditions, but I get to pass it on to five more blogs. The chosen are:

Benjamin Solah, Marxist Horror Writer because he's not afraid to speak up for what he believes in and he's constantly making me think.

Raven Corrin Carluk who's both a writer and an artist, and whose novel, All Hallows Blood, is being published by Crescent Moon Press.

Simone because I love her elegance.

Carrie whom I've just discovered and I'm pleased I did.

Mireyah Wolfe for her wit and charm and because she masterminded the Fight Scene Blogfest.

And last, but not least, I received The Happy 101 Award.

I actually received this one a while back, but it comes with the condition that I think of 10 things that make me happy and it took me this long to think of them. :-)

1. A still summer's day that's not too hot and not too cold.
2. A good book.
3. The antics of my cats.
4. A well-written poem.
5. A walk on the boardwalk down at the lake with my friend.
6. Seeing a comment from someone new on my blog.
7. Coconut cream pie from the restaurant in Harris Park in Owen Sound.
8. A walk in the crisp, clear, winter's night after a fresh snowfall.
9. Hearing the wind whistling outside while I'm curled up in my chair reading.

I, in turn, invite anyone who can think of ten things to make them happy to accept this award and post it on their blog.

Happy Valentine's Day, everyone.

Feb 11, 2010

Luc Bat

I really need to start researching these forms before I commit to which one I’m doing in a given week. This one not only has specific syllable lengths for each line, but it’s also got a rather funky rhyme scheme.

The Luc Bat style predates Indochina and was introduced into Europe by the French. It’s a traditional Vietnamese verse form that is deeply tied to the soul of Vietnamese culture and people. Luc Bat is Sino-Vietnamese for "six eight", referring to the alternating lines of six and eight syllables. It will always begin with a six-syllable line and end with an eight-syllable one, however, it can be as long as you wish.

Unlike other verse forms which are traditionally enjoyed only by high class Vietnamese, Luc Bat is traditionally composed and enjoyed by people of all classes, from the lowly peasants to the noble princes. It can be regarded as a living style of Vietnamese people. The rich treasure of Vietnamese folk poems (ca dao), which consists of hundred thousands of verses that reflect on life, morality, human relationship, and nature’s beauty, are almost entirely composed in Luc Bat form.

The Luc Bat uses a kind of falling/climbing rhyme where a rhyme sound first shows up as the end of a six-syllable line, then as the sixth syllable of the next eight-syllable line. The form interlocks and can go on for any number of couplets, finally interlocking back to the beginning.

There are two types of rhyme schemes for the Luc Bat. The first type is the more common and popular one. In this rhyme scheme, 6th syllable of the six-syllable line rhymes with the 6th syllable of the eight-syllable line, then the 8th syllable of the eight-syllable line rhymes with the 6th syllable of next six-syllable line, and the pattern goes on. This rhyme scheme can be summarized in the following model:

1 2 3 4 5 A
1 2 3 4 5 A 7 B
1 2 3 4 5 B
1 2 3 4 5 B 7 C
1 2 3 4 5 C
1 2 3 4 5 C 7 D
1 2 3 4 5 D
1 2 3 4 5 D 7 A

The second type is the less common one which involves the 6th syllable of the six-syllable line rhymes with the 4th syllable of the eight-syllable line instead.

1 2 3 4 5 A
1 2 3 A 5 6 7 B
1 2 3 4 5 B
1 2 3 B 5 6 7 C
1 2 3 4 5 C
1 2 3 C 5 6 7 D
1 2 3 4 5 D
1 2 3 D 5 6 7 A

For the first time my poetry muse has failed me. I started a couple of really awful poems in the Luc Bat form, but nothing I’d care anyone to actually read. I admit I was short on time and the Luc Bat is not a poetry form that will be rushed.

So here is an example of a Luc Bat by Etain Druantia.


We've drifted beyond reach
lonely wood on a beach of tears
misshapen by life's fears,
accumulated years of pain
grounded by tides again
worn down by driving rain, fierce breeze,
relentless, tossing seas
bursting in waves do tease and play
lunge at bleached bones each day
unmoved we keep away from light
shadows hide, dim clear sight
blind to hope shining bright, dead beech.

Feb 10, 2010

Whimsical Wednesday

Don't Talk To My Parrot

Wanda's dishwasher quit working so she called in a repairman. Since she had to go to work the next day, she told the repairman, 'I'll leave the key under the mat. Fix the dishwasher, leave the bill on the counter, and I'll mail you a check . Oh, by the way don't worry about my dog Spike. He won't bother you.'

'But, whatever you do, do NOT, under ANY circumstances, talk to my parrot!


When the repairman arrived at Wanda's apartment the following day, he discovered the biggest, meanest looking dog he has ever seen. But, just as she had said, the dog just lay there on the carpet watching the repairman go about his work.

The parrot, however, drove him nuts the whole time with his incessant yelling, cursing and name calling.

Finally the repairman couldn't contain himself any longer and yelled, 'Shut up, you stupid, ugly bird!'

To which the parrot replied,

'Get him Spike!'

See - Men just don't listen!

* * * * * * * * * *

Down On the Farm

On the farm lived a chicken and a horse, both of whom loved to play together.

One day the two were playing, when the horse fell into a bog and began to sink.

Scared for his life, the horse whinnied for the chicken to go get the farmer for help!

Off the chicken ran, back to the farm.. Arriving at the farm, he searched and searched for the farmer, but to no avail, for he had gone to town with the only tractor..

Running around, the chicken spied the farmer's new Harley.

Finding the keys in the ignition, the chicken sped off with a length of rope hoping he still had time to save his friend's life.

Back at the bog, the horse was surprised, but happy, to see the chicken arrive on the shiny Harley, and he managed to get a hold of the loop of rope the chicken tossed to him.

After tying the other end to the rear bumper of the farmer's bike, the chicken then drove slowly forward and, with the aid of the powerful bike, rescued the horse!

Happy and proud, the chicken rode the Harley back to the farmhouse, and the farmer was none the wiser when he returned.

The friendship between the two animals was cemented: Best Buddies, Best Pals.

A few weeks later, the chicken fell in to a mud pit, and soon, he too, began to sink and cried out to the horse to save his life!

The horse thought a moment, walked over, and straddled the large puddle.

Looking underneath, he told the chicken to grab his hangy-down thingy and he would then lift him out of the pit.

The chicken got a good grip, and the horse pulled him up and out, saving his life.

The moral of the story?

(yep, you betcha, there is a moral!)

When You're Hung Like A Horse, You Don't Need A Harley To Pick Up Chicks!

Feb 9, 2010

Tell Me Your Fortune - Part II


Long before tarot cards, astrology, rune stones, etc, dice were cast to gain an insight into the future and the unknown. The term for divination by casting dice is cleromancy.

African witch doctors of certain tribes use dice for this purpose, although their dice are not the standard ones we use. Indian Hindu's use an ancient divining science called Ramala and the dice used are very similar to standard dice except they are spun on a rod. Both ancient Egypt and Rome used dice for divination. The Greek term for divining by dice is astragalomancy from the Greek word for knucklebone dice astragalus's.

There are dice marked with mystic symbols specifically used for fortune telling and divining. Rune dice are a common type but standard dice may just as easily be used. Tibetan monks practise a dice divination technique called Sho-Mo using three ordinary standard spotted dice.

Dice made of bone or ivory are said to be particularly receptive while wood, stone or a natural material are next best, but don't worry if yours are plastic, they will suffice.

Unlike interpreting tarot cards or tealeaves using dice to divine answers to questions requires little intuition. When you feel too tired or distracted to connect with your imagination and intuition, try casting dice for a quick, clear answer to a query.

Reading Your Fortune with Dice

Draw a circle 12 inches in diameter with chalk on a wooden table. Shake three dice vigorously, using either a cup held in the left hand or both hands cupped together if no cup is available. Cast the dice within the circle.

If one die falls outside the circle then it indicates a block to the developments shown by sum of all three dice. If two dice fall outside the circle it warns of a disagreement about the event shown by the sum of all three dice. If all three dice fall outside the circle, try again. If the dice land beyond the circle a second time, try again the next day as the situation is unclear.

Add the sum of all three dice. Read the following interpretation and consider how this statement responds to your question.

THREE: ponder well on what you intend to do. Rushing into things may cause problems. Caution is advised in all things.
FOUR: something you have been hoping for will happen soon.
FIVE: you have nothing to worry about. Your difficulties will pass. A good time to start a new enterprise.
SIX: you are in for a disappointment, but do not take it too seriously. It may be a blessing in disguise.
SEVEN: scandal may touch you for no fault of your own. Avoid petty disputes.
EIGHT: something out of your past will come back to haunt you. Avoid bitterness and recriminations.
NINE: good luck is ahead in school, business, or love. But keep away from games of chance for some time.
TEN: changes are coming, either for good or for evil. Unless you act cautiously, a loss is certain.
ELEVEN: a family matter will soon have you deeply involved. Do not speak too freely of private matters, especially to strangers.
TWELVE: a quarrel with a friend is indicated. Your behaviour will determine its outcome.
THIRTEEN: trouble and bad luck ahead. Put little faith in promises.
FOURTEEN: you may soon have to travel. The journey will be successful.
FIFTEEN: you will have good luck in making an important selection, either in love or in business.
SIXTEEN: you will make a friend who will influence you greatly. But do not desert old friends needlessly.
SEVENTEEN: you will be involved in an enterprise requiring perseverance and industry. Success depends on your efforts.
EIGHTEEN: a lucky toss, indicating success in anything you undertake. Honours and awards lie ahead.

Feb 8, 2010

Mastering Monday

Okay, so I'm not quite sure how it happened, but this post ending up on my Random Writings blog instead of here on Random Thoughts. Guess I had a lot on the mind when I scheduled it last night. Anyway, here it is, in all it's glory. :-)

As you can see, I’ve been playing around with the font colours again. When I got to the point where I couldn’t decide if I was improving things or just making them worse, I decided to stop. :-)

You’ll also notice the comments link is still at the top, rather than the bottom of my posts. My only consolation is that I’m not alone – this is happening to other bloggers as well. No one seems to know why this is happening, and unfortunately, no one knows how to correct the problem. Blogger says “they’re working on it”. I’ve checked the editing page, and I’ve gone through the HTML coding with a fine toothed comb; :I’ve changed the comments from a popup and back again; I even deleted my template and started from scratch. According to everything I’ve checked, my comments link should be showing at the bottom not the top. I give up! Grr!



Last week’s goals were a fortune telling post for Tuesday; more humour for Wednesday; the poetry form of Terzanelle; and Chapter 25 in the continuing Space Opera.

Not only did I attain last week’s goals, I also read three more books, which is why I didn’t get much else done. :-)

Goals for This Week:

Random Tuesday: Fortune Telling, Part Two. The second part of my series about fortune telling will explore Divination by Dice.

Whimsical Wednesday: I’m starting to run out of humourous stories so I might have to resort to a couple of cartoons or videos instead.

Thursday: the Passion for Poetry form this week with be the Luc Bat.

Friday: Chapter 26 of the Space Opera. And hopefully I won’t be up until 2 a.m. writing it like I was last week. :-)

I think I’d also better make note here that I also want to get some editing done, and maybe even some fresh words in one (or both) of my two WIPs.

It’s easy to pat myself on the back with my weekly goals when that’s all the writing I do in the week. This week’s motto will be: Less reading and more writing.

Random Writing

I got my post up last week for the Fight Scene Blogfest and many wonderful people commented on it. If you missed the blogfest, you can still access the list of participants HERE

A couple of days ago I did an update of how I’m doing on the goals I set myself at the beginning of the year. Not doing too bad at all, if I do say so myself. Hopefully I can keep up the good work.

Tuesday, look for my post about the Northumberland Scribes. We have a meeting tonight, which means I’ll be posting a prompt for you guys to have some fun with. I’ll be posting my own flash piece to inspire you.

I think it's about time I added a couple of progress bars in one of the side columns to show what I'm working on. The added advantage of this is people can shame me getting to work if those bars don't move. :-)

So, how about you? What have you got planned for the week?

Feb 4, 2010


In October, to prepare for NaNoWriMo, I did several extra poetry posts so all I’d have to do in November is post them. This form was one I considered doing, but ultimately abandoned because it’s a little . . . shall we say . . . challenging. As one web site put it: The terzanelle is a good form for the recovering obsessive-compulsive

The terzanelle, invented by Lewis Turco in 1965, is a poetic form that combines the villanelle’s refrain with the terza rima’s end line patterning. Turco’s "Terzanelle", the original terzanelle poem titled for the name of the form, was first published in the summer edition of The Michigan Quarterly Review that same year. Over the years, Turco’s invention has become well known and popular. Hundreds of terzanelle poems may be found by as many authors.

Here are the rules by which a terzanelle should be written:

The first and third lines of the opening tercet are refrained as the second and fourth lines of the closing quatrain.

The terzanelle body is comprised of tercets that each refrain the second line of the preceding tercet for its third line. The first line of each of these tercets is rhymed with its refrained line.

It is a fixed form of 19 lines (five triplets and a quatrain).

The closing quatrain refrains the second line of the last tercet as its third line and rhymes its first line with that refrain.

Lines may be in any length or meter within reason.

Terzanelles may be written on any subject.

To give you a better idea of how it works, here’s the repeating and rhyme scheme:

Line 1 A
Line 2 B
Line 3 A

Line 4 B
Line 5 C
Line 6 repeats line 2

Line 7 C
Line 8 D
Line 9 repeats line 5

Line 10 D
Line 11 E
Line 12 repeats line 8

Line 13 E
Line 14 F
Line 15 repeats line 11

Line 16 F
Line 17 repeats line 1
Line 18 F
Line 19 repeats line 3

My example was inspired by the new header on this blog. I have a soft spot for dragonflies. :-)


The wind is sighing through the trees,
The warmth of summer shimmers ‘round;
Magic‘s found in days like these.

A forest pool, a wild playground,
Where water lilies are abloom,
The warmth of summer shimmers ‘round.

A wafting scent of rare perfume;
The air is soft with ambient light
Where water lilies are abloom.

Who directs your soaring flight,
Free spirit wandering where it will.
The air is soft with ambient light.

You dip and weave and fly with skill -
I’d follow if I only could,
Free spirit wandering where it will

I watch you flitter through the wood;
The wind is sighing through the trees.
I’d follow if I only could -
Magic is found in days like these.

Feb 3, 2010

Whimsical Wednesday

Just a short whimsical offering for you today, hope you enjoy!

Learning English

A Priest was about to finish his tour of duty, and was leaving his Mission in the jungle where he has spent years teaching the natives when he realizes that the one thing he never taught them was how to speak English.

So he takes the chief for a walk in the forest. He points to a tree and says to the chief, 'This is a tree.'

The chief looks at the tree and grunts,'Tree.'

The Priest is pleased with the response. They walk a little further and he points to a rock and says, 'This is a rock.'

Hearing this, the chief looks and grunts, 'Rock.'

The Priest was really getting enthusiastic about the results when he hears a rustling in the bushes. As they peek over the top, he sees a couple of natives in the midst of heavy sexual activity.

The Priest is really flustered and quickly responds, 'Man riding a bike.'

The chief looks at the couple briefly, pulls out his blowgun and kills them.

The Priest goes ballistic and yells at the chief that he has spent years teaching the tribe how to be civilized and be kind to each other, so how could he kill these people in cold blood that way?

The chief replied, 'My bike.'

* * * * * * * * * *

Enjoy your day and remember to keep off the roads when riding someone else’s bicycle!

Feb 2, 2010

Tell Me Your Fortune, Part One

Fortune telling can be a lot of fun and any one can do it, even you.

A long time ago I started compiling different methods of fortune telling with an eye to making a book. Actually, I did make a book, but it's a volume of one that I pull out every once in awhile to have a little fun. But what good is fun if you can't share it? So here I am, sharing it. This is the first in a series of posts I'm doing on some of the more simple methods of fortune telling, the idea being for you to try them out and have some fun.

We start with the age old practice of reading tea leaves.

Tasseography (also known as tasseomancy or tassology) is a divination or fortune-telling method that interprets patterns in tea leaves, coffee grounds, or wine sediments.

The terms derive from the French word tasse (cup), which in turn derives from the Arabic tassa (cup), and the Greek suffixes -graph, -logy, and -mancy (divination).

To read someone's tea leaves, you must use loose tea leaves. A small, white cup with no designs or patterns on the inside walls is ideal. Have the person drink the tea, leaving a minute amount of liquid in the bottom of the cup, as well as some tea leaves. Holding the cup in the left hand, he or she should slowly swirl the contents of the cup around three times clockwise. Try to make sure that the leaves are moved towards the rim of the tea cup. Then they should place the cup upside down on the saucer, holding it there for 7 seconds while letting the fluids drain. When the tea cup is placed right side up again, the handle should be facing the reader while he or she interprets the symbols and images.

It is traditional to read a cup from the present to the future by starting along the rim at the handle of the cup and following the symbols downward in a spiral manner, until the bottom is reached, which symbolizes the far future.

Below I’ve listed a few of the traditional meanings of some more common symbols you may see. If you’d like to learn more about reading tea leaves or even just a more comprehensive list of meanings, click HERE

AIRCRAFT – a journey; if broken, danger of an accident; can mean a rise in position
ANCHOR - a lucky sign; success in business and constancy in love; the realization of your wishes.
APPLE - achievement
AXE - difficulties; near the top, overcome.
BALL - variable fortunes.
BELL - unexpected news; good if near the top.
BIRDS - good news.
BOAT - visit from a friend, protection.
BOOK - open, good news; closed, a need to investigate something.
BUTTERFLY - fickleness.
CANDLE - help from others.
CAT - deceit, a false friend.
CHAIN - an engagement or wedding; an entangled chain means a; a long, thick chain indicates ties you wish to undo; a broken one, trouble in store.
CHAIR - a small chair shows an arrival; a large one, deliberation over a new plan.
CIRCLE - success, completion; with a dot, a baby.
CROSS - expect to meet with hindrances and obstacles; sorrow and misfortune are also indicated.
CROWN - advancement and honor; the attainment of your highest ambition.
CROWN AND CROSS - signifies good fortune resulting from death.
DAGGAR - danger from self or others, beware of recklessness.
DOG - good friend; if at bottom, friend needs help.
DUCK - money coming.
ELEPHANT - wisdom and strength.
FACE - a change, may be a setback.
FEATHERS - large feathers mean achievement and prosperity; to authors, literary success; small feathers denote something of which you are afraid, but which you will meet with courage.
FISH - good news from abroad; if surrounded by dots, emigration.
FORKED LINE - decision.
GOAT---be careful of enemies.
GRAPES - these signify pleasure, abundance, fulfillment, and a life free from care.
GUN - a sign of discord and slander.
HAND---if open, friendship; if closed, an argument.
HEART - pleasures to come; if surrounded by dots, through money; if accompanied by a ring, through marriage.
HORSE - -if galloping, good news; if head only, a lover.
HOURGLASS - need to decide something.
HOUSE - success in business.
IVY, Patience, understanding, steadfastness, and loyal friends.
KITE - wishes coming true.
KNIFE - a warning of disaster through quarrels and enmity.
LADDER - promotion, a rise in life.
LINES - -straight, progress; wavy, uncertain path.
MOON (as a crescent) - prosperity and fortune.
MOUNTAIN - the promise of the realization of a great ambition and of the influence of powerful friends; many mountains indicate obstructions and sometimes powerful enemies in your career.
MUSHROOM - sudden separation of lovers after a quarrel
PALM TREE - a symbol of honor, fame, and victory; increase of wealth, love, and marriage.
PIG - good and bad luck mixed: a faithful lover but envious friends.
QUESTION MARK - need for caution.
RABBIT - fair success in a city or large town.
RING - at top, marriage or an offer of marriage; at bottom, long engagement; if broken, engagement is broken off.
SCALE - legal issues; if balanced a just result; if unbalanced, unjust.
SCISSORS - An unlucky sign of friction between friends; disputing and disagreeableness with married couples; quarrels between lovers; trouble in business.
SHELL - Good luck from an unexpected source.
SHIP - worthwhile journey.
SHOE - change for the better.
STAR - a lucky sign; if surrounded by dots, wealth and honor are foretold.
SWORD - a sign of danger, sudden illness, or even death; it also betokens slander and dangerous gossip.
TREES - a sure indication of prosperity and happiness; surrounded by dots, a fortune in the country.
TRIANGLE - a fortunate meeting, good luck; sometimes an unexpected legacy.
UMBRELLA - if it is open, bad weather and grumbling are foretold; closed, a bit of bad luck which may be avoided.
WINDMILL, success in a venturous enterprise.
WOLF, beware of jealous intrigues.

Feb 1, 2010

Monster of a Monday

I have to tell you, I'm very glad that January is behind me now. It was not a good month for me. In fact, it was pretty craptacular. I had migraines and computer problems, you might have noticed my comments are now showing at the top of my posts instead of the bottom. I have no idea how this happened and they've been resisting my every effort to fix it.

This week was the worst of all. My cat, Panda, started losing weight again and when it dipped to 4.9 pounds we came to the painful decision it was time to let her go. She fought a good fight, but she let us know it was time. You can read my tribute to her HERE.

So here's hoping February will be kinder.

* * * * * * * * * *


Last week's goals were: random facts about dreaming; a funny story for Whimsical Wednesday; the poetry form of Qasida; chapter 24 of the Space Opera; and a remodel of this blog.

No one is more surprised than me over the fact I reached all my goals. I even managed to get my chapter posted on time. I'm still not 100% sure about the colours of the blog but it's definitely easier on the eyes. And as I mentioned above, somehow my comments ended up at the beginning instead of the end of my posts and that definitely needs to be fixed.

Goals for This Week:

I think for Tuesday I'm going to explore some of the more uncommon methods of fortune telling. Who knows, it might even end up as a series.

I'm not finding much amusing these days, but I'll try to come up with something for Wednesday.

Thursday's Passion For Poetry will be the invented form of the Terzanelle.

And Friday, of course, will be another installment of the never-ending serial. :-)

Random Writing

Be sure to check out today's post over here - it's my offering for the Fight Scene Blogfest. And then follow the link from the post below so you can check out the other posts. Should be lots of good reading.

So, that's my week, such as it is. Anybody else got anything interesting going on? Read any good books lately? Check it out, I'm up to 11 books for the year so far. It'll be interesting to see how many I end up reading in total. :-)